Organophosphonate is a chelating agent which has molecules with the ability to provide more than one bond to a metal ion, thereby augmenting the stability of the ion complex. Chelation represents a particular way of binding ions and molecules with metal ions. It involves the formation of multiple separate coordinate bonds between a polydentate ligand and single central atom. Usually, these ligands are organic compounds and are referred as sequestering agents, chelating agents, chelators or chelants. Organophosphonates is used in numerous technical and industrial applications.
Organophosphonates such as 1-hydroxyethanediphosphonic acid (HEDP) and ethylenediaminetetra (methylenephosphonic acid) (EDTMP) have wide applicability in various industrial and household products. Organophosphonates, in particular, are significantly consumed in boiler treatment applications to prevent the precipitation of scale deposits in water systems using a scale preventive composition, which consists of materials of organophosphonates and amines. These compounds provide a synergistic effect in the prevention of scale deposits in water systems. Moreover, due to rapid growth of the paper and cleaning industries, organophosphonates have witnessed high demand in certain bleach and pulp applications. Due to these factors, the demand for organophosphonates is expected to experience significant growth over the forecast period. Moreover, in the agrochemical industry, synthetic organophosphonate is the post-emergence, broad-spectrum herbicide glyphosate, which has been dominating the global agrochemical product sales. Due to these factors, the demand for organophosphonates is expected to increase significantly in the next few years.
Increasing demand for organophosphonates from the cleaning & detergent industry and pulp & paper industry is expected to drive the demand for the market over the next few years. In addition, the growth of the global pulp & paper industry is subsequently expected to fuel the demand for organophosphonates over the forecast period. Furthermore, rapid industrialization coupled with stringent government policies for clean and fresh water for various applications such as water treatment chemicals among others is expected to fuel the demand for organophosphonates.
Asia Pacific was the largest market for organophosphonates owing to the presence of a significant number of chelating agent manufacturers in Asia Pacific, particularly in China. Furthermore, Asia Pacific is expected to witness the fastest growth over the next few years on account of increasing usage of organophosphonates in the existing large-scale textile and pulp & paper industries, particularly in China and India. Europe trails behind Asia Pacific where chelating agents are being increasingly used in healthcare and pharmaceutical applications.
Key players in the organophosphonates market are AkzoNobel N.V, BASF SE, Cargill Incorporated, Kemira Oyj, Lanxess AG, Sigma-Aldrich Corporation, Tate & Lyle PLC and The Dow Chemical Company among others. In June 2011, AkzoNobel opened a new laboratory in Deventer, the Netherlands, to increase the production of ‘Eco Premium’, products that have more environmental benefits than their mainstream equivalents. BASF announced a plan to build a new chelating agent plant at Evonik’s Theodore, Alabamasite, to meet the fast growing global market demand for its innovative chelating agent products. BASF SE and the Dow Chemical Company are fully integrated companies that are engaged in the production of raw materials such as formaldehyde and hydrogen cyanide. These companies also have their own distribution channels. After production, organophosphonates are sold through third-party distributors such as Sigma-Aldrich Corporation to pulp & paper, cleaning and agrochemical industries. Companies such as AkzoNobel distribute organophosphonates through Viachem Ltd., a specialty chemical sales and marketing company. In some cases, manufacturers of organophosphonates enter into captive consumption where they consume their own manufactured products where they are used in certain cleaning and chemical industries.
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